Election 2018News

Democrat Phil Weiser becomes first attorney general candidate to submit nominating petitions

Author: Ernest Luning - March 15, 2018 - Updated: March 15, 2018

Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser, left, gathers a peititon signature on March 12, 2018. (Photo courtesy Weiser campaign)

Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser delivered nominating petitions with more than 21,000 signatures to the Colorado secretary of state’s office Wednesday, his campaign said.

The former University of Colorado Law School dean and Obama administration Justice Department official is the first of three Democrats petitioning to get on the June 26 primary ballot to turn in signatures. The others circulating petitions are Denver attorney Brad Levin and former federal prosecutor Amy Padden.

It takes 10,500 valid signatures from registered Democrats — 1,500 from each of the state’s seven congressional districts — to qualify for the primary.

Weiser is also going through the state assembly on April 14, where he’ll need at least 10 percent of the delegate vote if it turns out he has sufficient signatures, or 30 percent to be nominated to the ballot outright at the assembly. State Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton, is also pursuing the ballot through assembly.

“Since the launch of this campaign, we have sought to engage as many Coloradans as possible,” Weiser said in a statement. “Our work to get on the ballot is truly a team effort, only possible through the efforts of hundreds of supporters collecting signatures from Democrats across the state. I am honored that so many people have responded to our message, and their support will continue our great momentum as we proceed throughout the assembly process.”

Weiser said he gathered around 500 of his petition signatures himself.

George Brauchler, the 18th Judicial District attorney, is the only Republican running for the office held by Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, who is pursuing the GOP nomination for governor.

Candidates who are petitioning onto the ballot have until Tuesday to deliver their signatures to the secretary of state’s office.

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning is a political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has covered politics and government for newspapers and online news sites in Colorado for more than 25 years, including at the Highlands Ranch Herald, the Jefferson Sentinels chain of community newspapers and the Aurora Sentinel, where he was the city hall and cops reporter. After editing the Aurora Daily Sun, he was a political reporter and blogger for The Colorado Independent site. For nearly a decade, he was a senior political reporter and occasional editor at The Colorado Statesman before the 119-year-old publication merged with Colorado Politics in 2017.